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Spiritual Growth - Living a Life of Faith

Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin – Our Fickle Feelings!

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When you repent, turn from your sins and give your life over to Yeshua (Jesus), your sins are forgiven and you have eternal life. Your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. But sometimes the devil still causes us to continue to feel guilt and shame. He uses those fickle feelings of ours, the feelings that change with every shift of the wind, to make us fall once again under the burden that Yeshua took from us. How do we live in God’s truth and not by our feelings?

An image of a dark haired woman against a black background. She has on a white blouse and is looking downward with her head in her hand like she is ashamed with a text overlay that says Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin - Our Fickle Feelings!

Continuing to Feel Guilt and Shame

As I write this, I just finished celebrating the High Holidays, with Monday evening ending Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement where Jews from all over the world join together in repentance and a 25 hour fast to “afflict our souls” in repentance.

It was a highly emotional day full of synagogue services that focused on repentance and also memorials. We held Yizkor, which is a memorial service for those of our loved ones, of blessed memory, who passed before us. While it was all done virtually, it was still extremely moving, especially as I saw my parents’ pictures on the screen.

We all prayed together with repentant hearts, cried together, shared together.

It was a day where we as a community confess together and it makes me realize how often during the year in my own personal prayers of confession they feel so cursory in comparison.

Sometimes after prayer, when I come before God and have confessed my sins to Him and laid it all at the foot of the cross, Satan wants me to forget the truth of redemption and I will continue to feel that guilt and shame, that burden of my sin.

You see when I have confessed and claimed God’s Word that says…

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

1 John 1:9 TLV

…the enemy of my soul will immediately go after my feelings and make me feel like I didn’t do enough. Like I wasn’t yet forgiven.

The enemy makes me feel like I am still carrying that sin, causing me to focus on my feelings instead of the truth of God’s Word.

He wants me to focus on my feelings instead of the truth of God's Word. #guilt #shame #forgiveness #repentance Click To Tweet

Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin - Our Fickle Feelings! 1

Satan wants me to feel that somehow I haven’t done enough, as though forgiveness was in my own hands and there is actually works that I can do in my own power to exact it.

It is a lie and it is a damaging one at that because it seeks to minimize the work of Yeshua, it seeks to minimize Torah and it puts the focus on me instead. It seeks to make me strive to achieve my own forgiveness taking God’s grace and mercy out of the equation.

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The Power of the Word in Overcoming Shame

Satan deals in feelings and feelings are fickle; they can change in an instant! We can desire happiness, but happiness is merely a feeling that can change from day to day. What made us happy yesterday may not make us happy today. Joy and contentment that come from the Lord are a condition of our spirit but happiness is just how we “feel”.

Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin - Our Fickle Feelings! 2God’s Word has the power to defeat the lies of the enemy!

It doesn’t matter how I feel after I have repented of sin. What matters is what God says about it. What matters is what Yeshua does with it.

He takes ALL my sin, ALL my shame and makes me as white as snow!

You see, by making me feel unforgiven, Satan keeps those sins on my mind and in my spirit. God has forgotten them. 

Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin - Our Fickle Feelings! 3His Word says in Psalm 103:12:

“As far as the east is from the west,

so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”

TLV

They are dead…buried! Adonai SAYS they are!

By making us feel unforgiven, Satan ensures we keep resurrecting them! Yeshua buried them and, much like a dog keeps going back to where it buried a bone, we keep going back and we keep digging them up because we feel we just haven’t done enough!

Satan attempts to keep us from living in victory and instead living in burden, guilt and shame.

Our sin debt is paid and they are buried! But much like a dog keeps going back to where it buried a bone, we keep going back and we keep digging them up because we feel we just haven't done enough! Click To Tweet

When the Lies of the Devil Leave You Feeling Ashamed

He is a liar! He is the father of lies! And our feelings DO lie! He wants to use those feelings, those lies, to leave you feeling ashamed!

He wants to leave you with guilt and shame so that you don’t feel you can go to HaShem!

Fickle feelings change but God and His Word are constant! His grace and His mercy are constant in our lives!

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I don’t need to feel forgiven. I don’t need to wait until the feelings of guilt and shame disappear. I just need to focus on God’s truth and my feelings will get in line with that as long as I keep focused on His promises! Overcoming Guilt and Shame From Sin - Our Fickle Feelings! 4

If I confess my sins and practice teshuvah (repentance), His Word tells me that He IS faithful and just to forgive me and cleanse me of ALL…not some but ALL…unrighteousness. Yeshua wrote His own Name where mine had been etched in the Book of Death, He took my place, and He inscribed mine in the Book of Life! He paid the price already! It is done! It is finished!

Yeshua wrote His own Name where mine had been etched in the Book of Death, He took my place, and He inscribed mine in the Book of Life! Click To Tweet

By standing on His truth and not relying on your own fickle feelings, it WILL change how you feel and your spirit will line up with it. His truth defeats all lies!

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Scripture quotations are from Tree of Life (TLV) – Scripture taken from the Holy Scriptures, Tree of Life Version*. Copyright © 2014,2016 by the Tree of Life Bible Society.  Used by permission of the Tree of Life Bible Society.

Updated and Republished from 10/16/2019

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45 Comments

  1. As a highly sensitive introvert, satan is good at using my feelings. Everything becomes a bigger deal that in should. I’m practicing using the Scriptures to rewrite the internal conversation. Intentionally bringing key verses to mind in the battle points.

  2. Thanks for this. I know all too well how I can get into a weird head space when I focus on my feelings instead of God’s word. It’s as if I’m suddenly looking through a distorted lens and everything feels off, and then I subsequently perceive everything else through those same lens. This can have an effect on the whole of our lives which can lead to so many wrong thoughts and even alter the course of our lives.

    I actually wrote a post a while ago on interpreting our lives correctly through God’s eyes rather than through our own feelings if you’re interested to read.

  3. I really need to remember this. It is so easy for me to ask God for forgiveness then pick my sins right back up and wear them with guilt. That is not God, and I need to put that somewhere where I can see it over and over. I must stay connected to God so I hear His voice louder than anyone else’s – even my own.

  4. YESSSSS! This is so true. I grew up in a church that put a lot of emphasis on the way you feel. But then I realized that Satan often uses our fickle feelings to keep us from focusing on the truths of God that we find in His word.

  5. This is SO timely for me! I’m sharing this with a group of teens I’m working with- we were just discussing that our thoughts cause our feelings and so we have to discern who those thoughts are coming from. Satan is a liar and constantly feeding us lies. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Thank you for such a wonderful message. I’ve always struggled with assurance of salvation because of this very thing. I have had to learn that my feelings are fickle, and that to examine myself I need only to trust in the Truth of God’s word and not my feelings. There are lots of days where I feel spiritually on fire for God and other days where I just don’t feel God’s presence–and it’s these kind of days that make me feel somehow unsaved. Feelings change, but Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb 13:8).

    1. Amen!! It is a good thing our salvation doesn’t hinge on our feelings!! It is not based on us!! I know I have many days when I don’t “feel” saved…but we have His blessed assurance!!

  7. I love this post, Diane. We count way too much on our feelings. I’ve written about that quite a few times myself. Thanks for sharing on Grace & Truth. I’ll be sharing this on Social Media!

  8. Got me. I have a tendency to beat myself up over past sins. I’ve even written a blog post about it – Stop peeking into your old box of sins, God has already forgiven you! Thanks for this poignant reminder!

  9. My brother Dalton who is in Heaven shared a nugget of wisdom with me that is forever etched in brain. He said, “We cannot live our lives by our fickle feelings. We must live by the truth of God’s word that never changes. You can’t trust your feelings but you can trust God.” He loved Jesus and trusted Jesus with every fiber of his being. What an excellent example of a godly man…

    1. What a wise and godly man and what a blessing for you to have had such a wonderful brother and godly example! Thank you for sharing a bit of Dalton with us!!

  10. I have come a long with with trusting God rather than my feelings, but there are some that are so deeply rooted. When there is the tiniest opportunity, Satan uses that to bring me right back to my feelings. I’m grateful God doesn’t give up.

  11. This is such great encouragement, Diane! And so often we forget it when our “feelings” take us in the wrong direction. But we don’t have to let those feelings dictate where we go or what we think, nor do we need to let Satan trick us into feeling condemned. I needed this today! So thank you for this powerful reminder! Pinning!

  12. Feelings can be strong and seem so real, can’t they? But they can and will lead us astray. We must continue to stand on God’s Word and His principles. Thanks for a powerful reminder!

  13. So true. God created our minds, and He knows when we feel like we failed we grow heavy with shame and guilt making it hard to change and do better.

  14. This is so powerful and an area I think we all struggle in. There is something in us that wants to earn forgiveness but it is impossible! Only God can forgive! And you are so right, the enemy is a liar!

  15. “It is a lie and it is a damaging one at that because it seeks to minimize the work of the cross and puts the focus on me instead. It seeks to make me strive to achieve my own forgiveness.” This sentence stopped me in my tracks. How true it is, and how often I fall for the lie. Thank you so much for sharing.

  16. Enjoyed reading your post! I agree – ” If I confessed my sin, He IS faithful and just to forgive me and cleanse me of ALL…not some but ALL…unrighteousness. Jesus paid the price already! It is done! It is finished! ”

    It’s a beautiful truth.

    I’m linking up for the first time here. Thanks for the opportunity. : )

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